Edo state which is popularly regarded as the heartbeat of Nigeria has over the years degenerated, becoming a heart that has continuously been beating with immoral vices and social maladies which have conspicuously brought a bad status for the state in terms of depreciation in moral values.
Amidst a conundrum of contradictions and a seeming dip in the fortunes of the state — many male teenage youths are proud to be associated with initiation into cultism, while — there’s also a corresponding increase with respect to large crop of the females turning themselves into sex workers even at the expense of a beaming career prospects.
Sadly, as a result of these disturbing trends, many persons have been feared killed in different parts of Benin City and its environs in a clash between rival cult groups. Even institution of learning in the state which is supposed to a citadel of learning has also become a notorious den for numerous deadly campus cults who in turn terrorize the society and shattering the peace of the heartbeat of the nation.
These glaring immoral trend is a major cause of concern to the state government and the law enforcement agents which oftentimes close in and tries to stop these nefarious acts but it seems bewildering in tackling the endemic problems of cult wars, sex trafficking which is still rife in Edo State.
Beyond the pomp, pageantry, beauty in terms of cultural and traditional advancement, the state is unarguably the world’s richest tradition and culture but apparently morally deficient. On the paradox of morality, the steepening decay of morals in the society has affected the values and moral character fabric of young minds.
The reputation of Benin, the Edo State capital, as a crime haven may after all not be disputed because of the timely and regular heels of arraignment by the Edo State Police Command of different individuals for armed robbery, cultism and kidnapping suspects who keep terrorising Benin metropolis strongly corroborate the claims.
The cult wars and gang violence have continuously exacerbated the climate of lawlessness and fear in the polity, What is even more worrisome is that the menace has become so widespread even to the young innocent folks. Unfortunately, these cults by their nature are illegal and this ipso-facto makes them and their activities very dangerous not only to their rival groups but the entire society.
The worrisome rate of prostitution amongst these girls is beyond explanations, they are found trading their bodies at various joint across the state, willing to accept any amount from potential customers. They are usually lowly priced by male customers — For N1, 000 or even less, the prostitutes are willing to strip and engage in a round of sex. These prostitutes – both ugly and beautiful – compete for men’s attention.
Prostitution is not a profession women pursue because they like it. Only a few women will tell you that they voluntarily became prostitutes. Their reasons may include poverty, drug addiction, sex addiction, fear of violence and victimization from pimps who traffic them to unknown locations.
Sadly, the rising frequency of these cultic atrocities is not only alarming; it is approaching an epidemic level. It is therefore imperative that the authorities/law enforcement agencies must act swiftly with ‘Operation clampdown on Cultism & Prostitution’ in Edo state because many more lives have been extinguished prematurely in the course of violent crimes.
Beyond the physical combat towards addressing these issues, these young men and women need a strong awareness campaign to make them understand that what is presented as a paradise most times is the hell. So they don’t deserve that, they deserve a better career. As the case may be, the society is fast drifting towards social backwardness as the idea about morality in Edo state and even the nation at large has lost its essences as a result of the failure of value system.
Alao Abiodun is a Journalist, He can be reached via email@example.com and tweets @Kingbiodun_
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Let is also be noted that the high and mighty in the state and country at large will do all it takes to keep these young minds at the game of cultism to have them to use when need arises. It is also worthy of note that even the so called law enforcement agencies have a good percentage of their agents as “strongmen” in the said cult groups and engage in the daily romp with the prostitutes.
As much as the culprits need awareness and rehabilitation, the security personnel need it as well.